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Who is a racist Robert Sheridan bobsheridan Good points, Neal. True I said racism is like having a built-in lens that tints the way we see things; and we're not even aware we're seeing thru a tint, half the time. I didn't say, or mean by that, "innate," meaning inborn attitudes. I'm not sure anyone is born with inborn attitudes. Where would they come from? That doesn't make sense to me.

On the other hand, we pick up a lot of attitudes as we go along. Sometimes they express themselves in ways that others would call racist. Example: When I was a kid growing up on StatNisland during and after the war, we used the term "japped" as in "I got japped" or "he got japped" to mean someone got screwed. It wasn't until I moved to California decades ago and used the expression in conversation with a Japanese-American friend whose eyebrows shot up that the light dawned, to my embarrassment and an apology. I've never used the term since. Basically when I offend someone, I prefer to do it intentionally and with a certain amount of care, rather than by accident.

What other people choose to do or say is up to them. We all expose ourselves to a certain amount of criticism when we stick our two cents into public discussions such as these. That's part of what makes it interesting, I guess. I agree, there is no authorized PC body that tells us what we can and cannot say. So we say what we feel like and if someone takes offense, you know we're gonna hear about it soonest. Up to the speaker, then, to decide whether he wants to play by the other guy's idea of the rules or not.


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